Christchurch City Libraries offers an array of eResources for teens. One of our latest offerings is a variety of electronic reference books that address teen concerns. These books are different from eBooks – they are not downloadable but they are online for you to search on your phone or tablet any time of the day.
These concerns are of the personal type – maybe things you are not completely comfortable to discuss with others. Topics include mental health, teen pregnancy, diet, and suicide. Anyone can post opinions to the internet or Facebook, but that does not mean they are true or helpful. If you are seeking valid information on these topics, these are a good place to start.
The Credo Online Reference platform has had a makeover. It continues to offer searchable online reference books but it is now on a sleek new platform. Credo’s creator has called this product “the librarian’s answer to Wikipedia”! They believe that many people turn to Wikipedia when they are just starting to look for something whereas you should start here at Credo with its authoritative information and clever tools such as:
- Mind maps: enter a subject and Credo will create a visual brainstorm that expands the search and helps you find related terms;
- Topic pages: search for DNA and see topic pages for DNA, DNA profiling and DNA fingerprinting;
- An image library, crossword solver, quotation finder, biographies and a pronunciation tool with audio files so you can impress with your finely tuned speech;
- Printing in PDF and sharing your finds on Facebook, Twitter and email.
Now I must confess despite misgivings about Wikipedia, I have with a guilt-ridden heart used it. Credo is attempting to change this pattern by pointing to Credo as not only the start button but the finish button as well. Have a play and see if the hype lives up to the reality.
My mother would tell me there is “nothing new under the sun” which is her way of telling me that nothing I do surprises her anymore! Oh dear. It also tells us that everything has its own history and terms we all take for granted have a much richer context than we realise. A fantastic example of this is the term Mardi Gras. When I think of Mardi Gras I think of New Orleans and Jazz music but all is not as it seems.
According to Credo, Mardi Gras comes from the French for ‘Fat Tuesday’! This comes from the custom of using up all the fat in the household before the beginning of Lent (which started on Wednesday 13February this year). It represented the last opportunity for playing up and indulging in food and drink before the solemn season of fasting. Hence the carnivals (from the Latin ‘to take away meat’) in many parts of the world, including Italy, Brazil and of course New Orleans.
It seems in my ignorance I have been practicing ‘Fat Tuesdays’ and Lent for a while – I am forever gorging myself on food and then entering a period of repentance. Unfortunately my motives are not derived from a need to seek forgiveness but to just get back into the same pants I was wearing this time last year. The sin of gluttony and vanity are upon me so perhaps I should concentrate less on the festival aspect of life and more on the denial of Lent!
Recently the library purchased a new online book for the Credo Reference collection. Credo is this lovely online resource that contains 100 searchable and browsable online reference books. The book that caught my eye was called If the Paintings Could Talk. This book reveals the hidden histories of paintings in the National Gallery in London. Not in dry facts, but in funny and revealing stories like how ….
One day in 1965, a 15-year-old schoolgirl succeeded in making the National Gallery’s experts look foolish when she pointed out that they had hung a painting (Long Grass with Butterflies) of Van Gogh upside down!
Richard Charles Jackson died in 1923 with only 5 shillings in his bank account, yet he left two portraits from the studio of Rubens to the National Gallery. Jackson had been born to wealth but gave all of it away. He could be seen nightly on the Thames Embankment handing out food and money to the homeless.
The National Gallery’s paintings were stored in a Welsh quarry to protect them from the Blitz in World War II. Due to public pressure it was decided to display one picture a month. Arrangements were made to carry the painting down to the cellar each night and whenever the air-raid sirens sounded. Long queues waited to take their turn in front of the chosen painting, often many more than had visited the gallery on a daily basis in peacetime!?
The artist, Piero Di Cosimo was so pyrophobic (afraid of fire) that he cooked as little as possible, largely living off eggs which he boiled 50 at a time when he was making up the glue size for his paintings.
In 1908 Greta Moll had her portrait completed by the artist Henri Matisse, but confressed that when she saw her finished portrait she confessed, ‘the fat arms and heavy eyebrows bothered me”. I hear you Greta! I feel the same way when I look at my holiday snaps!
You can access Credo and many other interesting electronic resources at the Source using your library card number and PIN. Have a play and see what other clever morsels like these you can gather to drop into conversation. Who doesn’t like a random fact over the dinner table?!
If you’re working on a research paper, trying to win trivia games, complete that annoying cross word puzzle or just curious, Credo Reference has something for you! Our Credo Reference collection contains over 100 searchable and browsable full text online reference books from some of the world’s leading publishers, including Bloomsbury, Collins, Penguin and Thames and Hudson. For example:
- Crossword Solver – Enter the letters you do have and question marks for those you don’t and see what Credo can do!
- Measurement Conversions – covers area, weight, fuel consumption, speed volume etc.
- Credo concept map – enables you to quickly find information when you don’t know exactly what you are looking for and want to expand your knowledge of a given area.
- Image search – pictures of everything you have in mind!
You can access Credo Reference and many other useful electronic resources from home with your library card number and PIN, or at our community libraries.